The country was in shock today as roads in the south-east had to be dramatically cleared of a snow. Many commuters found getting to work a test of endurance, either having to scrape ice off theirs cars before commencing their journey, or having to traverse life-threatening conditions on their way to train or bus station.
"This is a total tragedy," said Bill Bunting of the AAA road watch, "people in the south-east have woken up to chaos this morning. No one could have guessed there would be snow fall in late December. We would advise all those in the south-east to stay indoors if possible and not leave their homes until March."
Supermarkets reported a spike in the selling of certain goods due to the unseasonably cold weather. "We're selling lots of soup," said Mark Meker, manager of a south-east supermarket, "because people are trying to eat warm things to keep themselves warm. Our line in woolly hats and scarves has gone mad too, unusual for this time of year. People are doing anything they can just to try and stay alive."
Wendy Withers of Weather Watch said that the cold snap in the south-east might last forty-eight hours or more, and warned there might be worse to come. "I think having cold winters may be something we have to get used to in this country," she said, and added that there may be many more snow showers before spring, that may or may not last for days at a time, and may or may not involve icy winds, and may or may not break records for the lowest temperatures.
There were particular warnings for the elderly, with advice to anyone in the south-east over 65 to stay indoors and keep windows and doors shut. "Old people will not be used to cold winters and the present conditions will come as a total shock to them. Many may not even have seen snow before. Our advice would be to stay in one room of their house, with a two bar fire, and drink gin," said Agnes Arcerned of Age Concerned, "and try not to be a bother to anyone."
Messages of encouragement and sympathy poured in from all over the country, as the rest of Britain looked on in shock at the light dusting of snow the south-east received. Heads of State from around the world expressed their support, and Prime Minister Tony Blair was moved to say that, "if any city in the world could cope with mild snowfall, then it would be London. I have every faith in the city's transport system."
Other parts of the country may have experienced snow too.
A road in the south-east with snow on it yesterday.